SOME fluffy new arrivals have made a splash at a Bolton primary school.

Children in the reception class at Markland Hill Primary School went absolutely quackers last week when ducklings hatched in front of their very eyes.

The pupils have since been taking part in ‘splash time sessions’, playing with the hatchlings in a miniature classroom paddling pool.

Reception teacher Philippa Benson explained that the ducklings were ordered after a successful school trip.

She said: “The topic for the children this half-term is wild things. We visited Martin Mere in the first week of term and it made the kids really want some ducks of their own. They even wrote a letter to Martin Mere to ask if they could have some.

“We managed to get some duck eggs and they arrived last Monday.

“We’ve kept them in an incubator and the children have been so excited. They kept looking at the incubator every five minutes.”

Miss Benson was just as amazed as her four and five-year-old schoolchildren when the first of the ducks hatched last Tuesday.

She said: “The first one hatched on Tuesday morning at 9.30am, so the children got to watch it live.

“They absolutely loved it, they were mesmerised.

“It was all the staff’s first experience at seeing ducks hatch as well and it was absolutely amazing.

“Another hatched on Wednesday morning at the same time, so the children saw that one live as well and then the other two came on Friday.”

It would be easy for young children to be distracted by four adorable ducklings but Miss Benson said they have actually had a positive effect.

She added: “They’re so kind and caring towards them, they’re like their pets. It’s improved their behaviour and concentration as well because I can say to them ‘let’s do this and then we can get the ducklings out’.”

The ducklings will be named by pupils later this week.